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How to Save Money on Summer AC Costs

Serving Families Throughout Clackamas
Summer AC Tips

Stay Cool and Lower Your Energy Bills

Summer is upon us, and that means it’s time to start thinking about how the increased heat will impact your home. And for those in the HVAC industry, it specifically means helping customers get their air conditioners ready. A working AC unit is essential for summer, and it’s important to ensure that your system is in good condition before the season is in full swing. However, just because you are going to be using your air conditioner more over the next few months does not mean your energy bill has to skyrocket.

Keep reading to learn how to save money on summer AC costs and prevent your system from over-exerting itself, and remember to call our experienced HVAC contractors at A-TEMP Heating, Cooling & Electrical for all your air conditioning needs.

The Best AC Temperature to Save Money

The right thermostat setting is very important for summer AC use, but that setting may be higher than you would think. The best AC temperature to keep your thermostat set at over the summer is 78 degrees. This slightly elevated setting will help balance your AC costs out, so you are not wasting money on cool air when your thermostat is already low. 

Generally, keep these summer thermostat guidelines in mind:

  • While you're at home, the best temperature to keep your AC on is 78 degrees.
  • When you're away for the day, set your AC to 80 degrees, or turn it off altogether.
  • When you're away on vacation, set your AC to 85 degrees, or turn it off entirely if there are no sensitive items at risk of damage.

The Top 7 Ways to Reduce Your AC Bill This Summer

1. Adjust Your Thermostat

As stated above, it's important to set your thermostat so that you achieve a balance between energy efficiency and your comfort. Set your thermostat to the highest temperature that you can while still being comfortable in your home. Ideally, this should be around 78 degrees for summer air conditioning cost savings.

Balancing your thermostat with your AC use helps to create more consistent temperatures throughout your home. And now, with programmable “smart” thermostats, you’ll be able to enjoy even more comfort, as these devices can actually study your living space and make ideal temperature adjustments for you!

2. Install Ceiling Fans

Although you might not think they would do much during the height of summer, ceiling fans can actually keep you cool while saving a lot of money. Consider when the temperature drops at night, and you need some cooling power but not the full blast of your air conditioner. There also may be some summer days where it is unreasonably temperate out, and running your AC is simply not an efficient form of energy use. Ceiling fans are perfect for supplying the amount of cooling power you need in these scenarios, plus they help spread cool air around a room in a way your air conditioner can’t. And luckily, with our home service professionals at A-TEMP, you can now get affordable ceiling fan installations designed to fit with any room of your choice.

3. Seal Up Cracks & Holes

Did you know you can lose as much as 30% of your cool air through cracks and holes throughout your home? This means your AC unit will have to work harder to compensate for all that wasted energy, which in turn will cause your energy bills to go up. The end result for you is higher AC bills for less relief. To improve energy efficiency, you should consider sealing any unnecessary openings in your home and caulking and weather-stripping doors and windows wherever possible. You may also want to call our indoor air quality pros to clean and inspect your ducts, as you can lose a lot of air through faulty ductwork.

4. Make Sure Your Home is Properly Insulated

Proper attic insulation is vital for a functioning HVAC system. Not only does your insulation keep air from escaping through those cracks and holes we talked about above, it also locks in temperatures, so you can enjoy consistent comfort from season to season. If your AC bills are high and you can’t find an explanation, you may want to hire a professional to take a look at your insulation, and determine whether it needs any improvements.

5. Close Curtains, Blinds & Shades

We understand that everyone wants to be outside in the sun for some part of the summer, but when it comes to your home and your AC system, it’s best to limit exposure to sunlight as best you can. Leaving windows uncovered to let in those rays can increase heat accumulation in your house by as much as 45%–meaning your AC will have to work a lot harder than is necessary. By simply drawing those curtains, blinds, and shades, you can keep your AC working at peak efficiency and stay completely cool and comfortable even during a heatwave.

6. Let Your AC Run When You Leave for the Day

“Wait,” you may be saying, “I thought this was supposed to be a list about saving money, and now you’re telling me to let my air conditioner run all day?” We know it may sound strange, yet keeping your air conditioner on at a sensible temperature when you leave for work during the day can actually reduce your greater AC costs. It works like this: when you turn on your AC in the morning and leave it at a steady 72 degrees, your home will already be completely comfortable by the time you get home at night. If, on the other hand, you return to a warm house after a long day, you will pretty much always crank your AC as low as it can go right away. This forces your air conditioner to work harder to cool your space faster, making it less energy-efficient, meaning you will spend more on your AC bill to be less comfortable overall. Instead, consider maintaining a consistent AC temperature on hot summer days, and then turning your system off when it gets cool at night.

7. Call a Technician Whenever You Need Service

Ultimately, the most important rule of AC savings may be that putting off service in the short-term will almost always cost you more in the long-term. Fortunately, A-TEMP Heating, Cooling & Electrical offers fast air conditioning repairs to get your system up and running again ASAP, and top-notch AC maintenance to improve your system’s energy efficiency and extend its lifespan. And if you do need to replace your AC unit, we promise to help you get a great deal on new equipment. Do not put off the signs there is something wrong with your air conditioner, and call A-TEMP right away if you need service.

Call A-TEMP Heating, Cooling & Electrical now at (503) 694-3396 or contact us online.